On July 12, Bankers Helping Bankers (BHB) announced the launch of the Bankers Helping Bankers Fund (BHB Fund), a fintech venture capital fund managed by Latitude38 Venture Partners. The fund will support community bankers' engagement with emerging technology providers to meet the future needs of customers and navigate the rapidly changing landscape of financial technology. It’s the latest development by BHB as it continues to move from strength to strength in building out a new ecosystem of profitability for bankers.
Established in 2021, BHB is a collaboration between FedFis and the Independent Bankers Association of Texas, with the support of community banking associations representing more than 75 percent of the nation’s bank charters. BHB is a free bankers-only social+ platform for collaboration and education. Through data tools and dynamic user groups, the service provides community bankers with a knowledge base focused on bank technology and emerging fintech companies, as well as hot topics such as cryptocurrencies, banking as a service, becoming a sponsor bank and launching a direct digital brand.
FedFis is a leading provider of integration technology for financial institutions. It tracks fintech data and infrastructure analytics, financial information on all financial institutions, mergers and acquisitions, and vendor data—including technology vendors—on every bank and credit union in the U.S.
“For years, founders have been looking for a fintech fund that can deliver where others have fallen short,” says Tanner Mayo, president of FedFis. “Our proprietary data tells us that bank distribution is the biggest challenge for fintechs. We plan on using our data to facilitate growth acceleration for emerging technology companies. The BHB ecosystem now includes access to capital, executive support, a roadmap to navigate financial technology integrations, a direct connection to fintech sponsor banks and a marketplace of community bank customers. It is the most complete end-to-end ecosystem for community bank-supportive fintech companies.”
Latitude38 Venture Partners is a recently launched firm led by managing partner Neeraj Vohra. Richard Leggett, co-founder and board member of K Street Capital, serves as a venture partner, as does Camden Fine, president and CEO of Calvert Advisors LLC and former president and CEO of the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA).
Vohra has more than 30 years of strategic financial management and capital markets experience. Most recently, at Naples Technology Ventures, he was responsible for sourcing and leading investments in fintech and enterprise software companies, as well as the day-to-day operations of the fund. He has been the chief financial officer of four private companies and his investment banking experience includes the execution of more than $3 billion of capital raise transactions and 12 merger-and-acquisition deals predominantly in the fintech industry.
Leggett is an accomplished global chief executive in the information services, financial services and professional services industries with more than 30 years of experience in growing and operating global businesses. Over the past 16 years, he has served as CEO of three private equity-based information services businesses. He is a co-founder and board member of K Street Capital, a Washington D.C.-based angel investment group.
Fine currently serves as president and CEO of Calvert Advisors, which he founded following his retirement from ICBA in 2018. A native Missourian and career community banker, he came to ICBA in 2003. Before joining ICBA, Fine chartered and organized Midwest Independent Bank of Jefferson City, Missouri, and served as its president and CEO for nearly 20 years. In addition, he owned MainStreet Bank of Ashland, Missouri, a $50 million asset community bank.
“With the Bankers Helping Bankers Fund, we are restoring hope to bankers by delivering new products, technologies and diverse opportunities for banks,” says FedFis co- founder Dave Mayo. “Bankers are embracing a more profitable model that is more inclusive to all communities while ensuring that sound and compliant banking practices are behind every brand.”
“Latitude38 Venture Partners is delighted to be working with Bankers Helping Bankers, FedFis and IBAT to invest in innovative fintech companies that bolster community banks—a critical pillar of the U.S. economy,” Neeraj says. “The team we’ve assembled is uniquely positioned to add value to fintech portfolio companies. We will generally invest in Series A rounds and will also look opportunistically at earlier- and later-stage investments.”
To learn more about Bankers Helping Bankers and to join the effort, click here.